HEU looking forward to constructive discussions on Bill 29 court ruling

News release

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The Hospital Employees’ Union is looking forward to constructive discussions with the B.C. government on the implications of the Supreme Court of Canada’s landmark decision striking down key sections of Bill 29, The Health and Social Services Delivery Improvement Act.

Health Minister George Abbott announced today that he has appointed the associate deputy minister of labour, Paul Straszak, to initiate these discussions with the affected health unions.

HEU and the other unions who backed the five-year court battle against Bill 29 had written the government on June 13 asking for a meeting to address the ruling and its implications.

“We’re looking forward to a constructive process that reflects and respects the court’s judgment,” says HEU’s assistant secretary-business manager Zorica Bosancic.

“We believe that all parties now have an opportunity to strengthen health care delivery and stabilize labour relations in the sector while also recognizing the impact of Bill 29 on both workers and the public.”

The June 8 ruling by the Supreme Court of Canada struck down three sections of the 2002 legislation including those that eliminated contracting-out protections in health care and community social services collective agreements.

The Court suspended its declaration for 12 months to give government an opportunity to deal with the repercussions of the ruling.